The new naval ensign was unveiled in an effort to move away from the colonial past and the need to change over to a new design drawing inspiration from naval history. Design inputs were invited from the entire navy personnel from all personnel from all formations and various hierarchies, which were used to develop the design of the new ensign for the Navy.
The introduction of the new designs of the Naval Ensign, as also the Distinguishing Flags, Masthead Pennants and Car Flags for the Indian Navy has been approved by the President of India.
What was the ensign earlier?
The erstwhile Indian Naval Ensign according to the Indian Navy included the National Flag in the upper left canton. There were red vertical and horizontal stripes and there was a golden yellow State Emblem which was superimposed on the intersection of the red stripes. ‘Satyamev Jayate’, the national motto was engraved in Devanagari script right under the State Emblem. This White ensign was being flown by all formations, establishments and ships of the Indian Navy until Thursday (September 1, 2022).
New Ensign – its significance
The ensign unveiled today has two main constituents: there is the National Flag in the upper left canton, and away from the staff a navy blue-gold octagon at the centre of the fly side.
Based on the information shared by the Indian Navy the octagon is with twin golden borders, encompassing the golden National Emblem (Lion Capital of Ashoka – with ‘Satyamev Jayate’ underscribed in blue Devanagari script). This is superimposed on a shield, and resting atop an anchor.
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Within the octagon, below the shield in a golden bordered ribbon on a navy blue background, the motto ‘Sam No Varunah’ of the navy in Devanagari script is inscribed in golden.
The design encompassed within the octagon has been taken from the Indian Naval crest, in this fouled anchor, associated with colonial legacy, and has been replaced with a clear anchor underscoring the steadfastness of the Indian Navy.
The Blue Water capabilities of the Indian Navy are depicted by the Blue colour of the octagonal shape. And, the twin octagonal borders draw their inspiration from the Seal of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj.
Symbolising the Indian Navy’s global outreach, the shape represents the eight directions (four cardinal and four inter cardinal). The Octagon draws positive energy from all directions, and it stands for good fortune, eternity, and renewal.
The new White Ensign is rooted in the glorious maritime heritage of India, as well as reflective of our Navy’s present –day capabilities.
According to the Indian Navy official statement, all formations, establishments, and ships would be adopting the new naval ensign. And as also the new distinguishing masthead pennants, car flags and flags.